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Washington Journal

Voice of America News/Business. (2012) Guest VOA Executive Director Steve Redisch. New.

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00:45:00

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mpeg2video

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ac3

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America 51, U.s. 28, Us 18, Steve Redisch 9, Washington 8, Cuba 5, North Korea 3, China 3, Cctv 2, Jessica 2, Look 2, Russia 2, Obama 2, Ohio 2, Syria 2, New York 2, D.c. 2, Paul 1, Deutsche Welle 1, Voa 1,
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  CSPAN    Washington Journal    Voice of America  News/Business.  (2012)  
   Guest VOA Executive Director Steve Redisch. New.  

    July 4, 2012
    9:15 - 10:00am EDT  

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voice of america. steve redisch will join us. >> told phil talked of a leak types in different cities. berchtold he talked to a hold a wide range of people. explore the countryside here he wanted to and understand what makes american stick. he had read that americans were individualistic. he actually saw us as much more collectivist this. it seems hard for us to imagine.
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he saw the u.s. as a group of people who like to form associations. who wanted to always be with other people. after he went to the u.s., he saw the french as the individualists. from that, he concluded that he was going to put up his colossal statute. he was going to have to say something to people who understood themselves as a big group. as a society. as a collective entity. >> watch this whole event as part of our lineup. it includes a discussion on how social media has changed the news coverage. commencement speeches from new york mayor, cory booker, and he long must -- elon musk. that starts at 8:00 p.m. eastern on c-span.
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>> we had pulled into the spot that morning. >> the former commanding officer of the u.s.s. cole on the events surrounding al qaeda's october 2attacks. >> i was doing routine paperwork when there was a thunderous explosion. you could feel all 505 feet and 8,400 tons of destroyer thrown up to the right. it is like the home in the air while the ship was doing this three dimensional twisting. we came back down in the water. lights went out. ceiling tiles came and popped out. everything on my desk lifted up a foot and slammed back down. i grabbed the underside of my desk until the ship stopped moving and i could stand up. >> more with lippold at 8:00 p.m. on sunday.
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>> "washington journal" continues. host: this week, we have a spotlight on foreign news operations. we kick things off on monday with al jazeera. yesterday, we heard from which a vella -- deutsche welle. today, we looked voice of america, which funds and as the official -- functions as the official place for broadcast outside of the country. here to talk about it with us is steve redisch, voice of america executive editor of. thank you for being here. -- executive editor of voice of america. thank you for being here. this is overseas, but not in the u.s. guest: correct. i would not call it an anomaly. it is one of those things where it is a function of the u.s. government. it is taxpayer-funded. the american people do not really get to see or hear about
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it or hear the product because legally, we cannot broadcast. host: up about the mission of steve redisch -- talk about the mission of voice of america. guest: mission is to inform and engage audiences with balanced accurate, reliable news information. the belief is that straightforward information to audiences that and i usually get it from state broadcasters is something that works. they can come to rely on the voice of america and rely on the u.s. the news may be bad or good, but we will tell you the truth. host: who makes editorial decisions and how is there a separation between the government and what you do? guest: i am in charge of all the news and programming decisions.
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but, i have a staff of civil servants who make editorial decisions. they are seasoned broadcasters. they have expertise in various areas. they make editorial decisions about what goes into their programs and what goes on the air. there is a fire wall that separates voice of america editorial decisions from being influenced by capitol hill or by the white house or by the state department. it is the broadcast board of governors. they are independent. they have 8 members plus the secretary of state. they serve as the overseers of voice of america and other international broadcasters to the u.s.. they serve as a firewall to protect our integrity. host: if you would like to talk to steve redisch of voice of america. 202-737-0001, democrats.
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202-737-0002, republicans. 202-628-0205, independent caller is. we are just getting to see some of luggfootage inside d.c. let us talk about who gets to see and hear voice of america. it is crossed -- broadcast in 43 languages. it has a budget of $205 million, that was in fiscal year 2011. talk to us about operations. who worked there? guest: they are federal employees and federal contractors. there are 1200 employees and 800 contractors. we work on the other side of the mall. we have television studios and radio studios and we have internet services, as well. for the most part, that is where
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almost all of our broadcast come out of. we do little programming out of new york and l.a. it is all coming out of washington, d.c., for the most part. it goes to satellites all over the world for broadcast by television affiliates. fm radio affiliates. host: let us go to the phones. here is an independent caller in orlando. good morning. caller: hello. i just had a quick question. i wanted to know why voice of america is illegal to show in the u.s.? that worries me a little bit because what i have read about it might be a propaganda program. i would like to get more information about why it is illegal. guest: thank you for your
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question. in 1948, there was something called the u.s. information and educational exchange act of 1948. it authorized the state department to do broadcasting to people around the world and to mitigate to audiences in various different ways to -- to communicate to audiences in various different ways. it forbade the u.s. from spending any money for broadcasting to the u.s. no government broadcasting to the u.s. would be funded. it really was an overseas type of communication now reached. that said, while its taxpayer- funded and he does -- while it and manyyer-funded can ge
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people will see it as propaganda, our own standards and a law that we are required to provide accurate and reliable information and be able to prevent various different opinions about u.s. policy so that audiences can then make up their own minds. much in the way that we have that opportunity here in the u.s. the idea for voice of america was to do that for audiences overseas. host: let us look at a recent story voice of america of. . this is about a conflict of syria. we have permission to show some short clips. [video clip] >> this photojournalist lies injured in a safe house. you have just witnessed -- he
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just witnessed his colleagues killed in a rocket attack. >> medical staff first reading me. this is the best medical treatment available. >> he has joined activists with the control of coalition for demanding a new treaty to control the global arms trade. host: we are seeing a story reported out of london. what is the international audience interested in hearing about? guest: they are interested in hearing about how the u.s. believes. what it sees. where its position is. what its policy is about various situations. voice of america brings credibility. it is an accurate and reliable source of information for the rest of the world. when we do a story like that from syria, how audiences know, through their experiences with
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voice of america, they can rely on our reporting. host: paul in cincinnati, ohio. good morning. caller: good morning. i love c-span i love your show. good morning to the guest. the voice of america programming in the middle east -- what is the status? which countries ar? guest: voice of america in the middle east broadcast in english. we have english-language radio programs as well as a robust web presence. arabic used to be in the voice of america. in 2003, a private corporation, and on-funded -- i am sorry, a nonprofit, fully funded by the u.s. government corporation called middle east broadcasting
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network was created. it broadcasts in arabic to the middle east, to all the countries. voice of america also broadcasts in persian. we broadcast to iran. we do some radio. we do a robust web presence. it is very successful. host: steve redisch, let us look at some new persian programming center to iran. this is a video. look at it. tell us about it. what is its purpose? why this tone? guest: we do a lot of straight news and hard news in deep discussion. we also found that audiences responded to satire. we created a program that started as a five minute segment and grew to a 15 minute program
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and then a half-hour program. the audiences, especially young audiences, responded to this. the program got cheered. -- shared. we felt that this is something that our audience is kind of like. wally to play the news, we have the opportunity to do satire and use people's own words to be able to show the differences between the u.s. and iran. especially on policy. host: here is a recent press release -- how does the iranian government react when something like this is being shared? guest: reaction from the government has been to try to copy it. they have created their own lampooning satire program.
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others have done that, as well. that is fine. we are happy to have more. host: new hampshire. rip. republican's line. good morning. caller: thank you foresees been for all the cool things you do. i appreciate the voice of america. \ i remember the cold war days when we were broadcasting into the soviet union and providing news that you could not get anywhere else. seems like there been other attempts. there was discussion about broadcasting to cuba. there was opposition to that. on the basis that fellow americans were so and i-american we did not haveo anything to say. there was one american that we are doing well enough --
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[unintelligible] do you have any comment? guest: thank you very much. voice of america does not broadcast to cuba. we do some spanish-language broadcasts that cubans are able to hear by shortwave. there is another organization under the broadcasting board of governors that solely broadcasts to cuba. is its mission to broadcast to cuba. they do a pretty good job of doing 24 hour tv and radio marquisuees. they deliver accurate and reliable news to the people in cuba. host: steve redisch, executive editor of voice of america. we are talking about voice of america as part of our series looking at foreign news operations in the u.s. here is a question from c-span junkie on twitter.
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guest: deal with that word propaganda. talk to was about how you taylor programming for different audiences. guest: propaganda is a heavy word. i do not think that any state broadcaster come any broadcaster who is funded by a government, i can get away from that word, whether they be the u.s. or iran or russia or china. or germany, for that matter. voice of america is chartered to deliver reliable, accurate, comprehensive and balanced news and information. a belief is that our audiences deserve that. it is in the u.s.'s best interest to be able to have an organization that does that. we have to fight the propaganda
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label every day. the only way that we can be able to overcome that loaded word is to deliver the kind of news and information that our audience is come to expect and rely on from voice of america. they can compare it to other news and information, and they do. our audiences are very sophisticated. they have access to a lot of different news and a lot of different opportunities to get information, whether it is from state broadcasters or other broadcasters. as well as the internet. it has created a real boon for people around the world. people are rather unable to get news and information they can compare with voice of america.
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u.s. about tailoring and how we deal with various different areas of the world. we have a central news organization that puts out some news and information and delivers it to our language services. our language services have their own people who are experts in their area. we try and do as much broadcasting that our audience is would come to use. in nigeria, it is a lot of national news. we are doing a lot of the iranian news in iran. we try and do different things for different areas in order to relate to audiences. it host: let us look at the details of >> "washington
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journal" continues. voice of america-- let us look at some of the details of voice of america. it is one of five civilian u.s. broadcasters under the broadcasting board of governors. for 2011, there were over $200 million. our guest will appear on the d.c. bureau. that is where it is headquartered. there are 1200 federal employees and hundreds of contractors that work for voice of america. it is broadcast in 43 languages and over 141 people to interrupt the world every week. a fire wall exists between the editorial staff and the government. it is not distributed domestically. eugene, oregon. our democrat's line. hello. caller: hi. i had a question. i believe that we should all be open to income levels.
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how much money does this person enjoy from his voice of america service? guest: are you asking how much money i make? as a federal employee, my salary is available through any foia requests. i make about a hundred $60,000 per year. host: steve redisch, after a career with cnn. he was the white house executive producer. he helped to launch the show " the world today." he 1 two and the awards. he -- he 1 two emmy awards. let us hear from a republican in texas. hello. caller: hello. what oversight is over this? who decides how we are portrayed
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overseas as americans? is the content regulated? hello my short that the way i am being representative -- how am i assured that the way i am being representative is accurate? guest: oversight is by the broadcasting board of governors. it is a bipartisan board appointed by the president, confirmed by the senate. there are quite to republicans and four democrats. the ninth member of the board is the secretary of state. whichever administration is in power at the time has the deciding vote on the broadcasting board of governors. they are very responsive to both the administration, as well as some members of congress. our budget is determined through the congress.
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the president proposes the co, the congress disposes. they have the opportunity to put conditions on the money that they do appropriate. as far as how americans are portrayed, by law, we are required to provide reliable, accurate, and balanced information to our audiences, as well as portray and tell the world about america and americans without any regard to any specific area or any specific group of americans. we do a lot of reporting about what life is like in america and that is something that our audience is truly respond to. they want to know what education opportunities there are in the u.s. what american life is like. they want to know -- they are very veracious as far as
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information about american life. host: how will they be reporting on the presidential election? guest: we're going to the conventions. we will have 20 different language services represented at the conventions. they will report in their own language about what is going on and what governor romney and president obama have to say and what their surrogates have to say as well as what the conventions are like and why people go to the conventions and what makes this process purely american. thering the latter days of campaign, we will have people out. we have a political reporter who has been out and does daily political reporting for all the world languages services that it translated into the other 42 languages. host: steve redisch, executive
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editor with voice of america. here is a story for "the washington post" -- she does about the show that has gone viral. let us take a look get a clip of it. "washington journa[video clip] [speakin >> you are a bad apple. i am glad we broke up. host: who is this young woman? who is doing it? guest: millions of chinese are
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doing it. jessica came to us several years ago and -- voice of america has been famous for its english language teaching. not just english, but american english. we have done a service called special english. english is used in a very slow, methodical way to teach audiences how to speak american english. now, we have branched out with the internet and being able to do a bunch of different things. we are trying very hard to communicate can teach english to audiences who want to learn english. our research shows that audiences in almost every country that we broadcast to want to learn english, american english. just the kind of hit upon 8 -- jessica kind of hit upon a way to teach english in a fun way.
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she talks to her audience every week. host: she is fluent in mandarin. guest: she studied mandarin in college. she spent several years in china. she is able to work with the audience and get them to tell her what they want to learn. host: is this something new that voice of america is doing? using young people to try to make this connection of fun programming? is that something that has been part of it all along? guest: i have only been here four years. we really have made an effort to reach up to younger audiences. most of the population is under 35. in most of the arab nations, the population bulge is under 30 and under 35. same thing with russia. and in china, the population is
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being exposed to a lot of different ideas and media. it is being censored. this is one way of being able to overcome the great fire wall and be able to talk directly to chinese audiences and let them know that voice of america is there and we have stuff for them. host: we are joined from ohio on our independent line. good morning. caller: good morning. at the independence way. -- happy independence day. i do not understand why the american people do not have access to watching and listening to what is portrayed about our country. we are the land of the free. if we are saying to other countries this is the way we are, why don't we have access?
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i will take your answer of the year. thank you. guest: thank you. there is a movement in congress to modify this act, the law that prevents us from broadcasting directly into the u.s. the internet age has made this law is somewhat outdated. anyone can access content online. it is in english. you can access it in any other language for the internet. it is there for you to see. we stream all of our programming, all our tv programs and our radio programs. it is available on demand. there is that opportunity to see it. it is really an act of congress
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that needs to take place for programming to be heard live in the u.s. host: you just answered our next tweeted -- guest: no, we don't. it is available on the internet. there is not much we can give your we want our programs to be available on every distribution platform around. internet and digital distribution is growing by leaps and bounds. it is jumping over other ways of distributing content in many areas, especially in africa. we want to be on those platforms. the only way we can is to be available everywhere. we are not going to keep americans from seeing the product. >host: kentucky. joe. good morning. caller: the morning. happy fourth of july. what kind of market research do you all do to see that your message is actually being hurt?
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-- heard? do you do any kind of programming that pokes fun at our own system? i will take my answer of the year. thank you. guest: we have not gone that far to poke fun at our own system. i believe that in order to truly do a satirical show like we do with our iranian program and we are developing others for other languages -- you have to be an equal opportunity satirist. we cannot just poke fun at one side and not the other. that said, -- host: the equal opportunity -- guest: you have to be able to go both ways. with our iranian programming, we
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do try to be balanced and equal opportunity satirists. it works for our audience. host: that asks on twitter -- guest: yes, we do. we are very successful. the previous caller asked a question about research. we do a lot of research. for instance, in north korea, refugees and people who come out of north korea, people who work in china, russia, and come across to south korea -- we find them and ask them questions about whether or not they can hear the voice of america programs. what they think of voice of america programs. what they get out of it. it is not quite the kind of
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research that we can think on -- bank on. we do market research in every market rebroadcast into. we have a contract with the broadcasting board of governors. they have a research contract with the gallup organization. previously, we had a contract with another company and they did research for us. the research is very good. it is very thorough. we ask a lot of questions about broadcast to try to find out what they are getting out of it. we ask whether or not they find out -- feel better informed. better informed about the u.s.. it is pretty thorough. we do quite a bit of research and spent quite a bit of money on research. host: another question from twitter -- host: how many government are
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receptive to you? guest: in north korea, shortwave radio. we broadcast a little bit of a.m. radio into north korea from across the border. we do a lot of shortwave broadcasting into other areas where governments are not receptive to granting us licenses, allowing us to make partnerships with affiliates radio stations on the ground. in many areas, we do have those opportunities to do that. for instance, in burma we made an agreement with the government to allow all language programming on terrestrial radio station. our burmese language broadcasting is being done by shortwave in satellite television. we are finding out satellite television is a short wave of the 21st century because issues
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are ubiquitous. they're cheap. they're easy to buy. in many areas, we can reach people via satellite tv. in some cases, it gets jammed. we were jammed by iran up until february for about a year on satellite tv. host: republican color in columbia, south carolina. good morning. caller: good morning. this is my first time getting through to c-span. i am a big fan. i want to say thank you. i was a peace corps volunteer and being able to listen to voa was extremely comforting. in fact, i remember learning the meaning of barking up the wrong tree in your english program. [laughter] i was also thrilled in 2008 to
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be able to help a voa reporter who was reporting on the election. he put a panel of female volunteers working on our presidential campaign and broadcast that throughout the world. that was a great opportunity to see how americans work on our elections and how a peaceful transition of power happens. thank you very much for your service. host: when you are in the peace corps, was the programming like? caller: it was english language, of course. i really remember hearing history lessons and talking about our constitution. the bill of rights. of course, english language learning. when people say propaganda, i did not find that at all. i think it was very informative,
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even for me. guest: thank you. thank you for your kind words. one of the things our chinese branches doing is putting together a documentary series on the bill of rights. 30 minutes in mandarin. the first installment was the right to bear arms, which is a very interesting explanation of how americans have come to understand their own rights. in the right to bear arms is something that is not allowed in many countries that we are broadcasting to. it is one of the series i am very proud host: ofvof. host: we have a clip of a new series. this is a swearing in ceremony in washington, d.c. we will jump in as the swearing ceremony is going on. [video clip] >> congratulations. [applause] >> i miss my home country.
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this november, i will be voting. >> i cannot wait to vote. i cannot wait to travel as an american. i am happy for my babies. enjoy freedom of everything. of which we do not have the opportunity where i come from. host: >> "washington journal" continues. 'voice of america's new series. guest: this is something i'm proud to debut on the fourth of july. the idea of the series is to give our new audience -- or audiences new opportunities to hear from americans about their lives here in the u.s. and what it means -- what they have been able to accomplish and what it means to the american without actually going overboard in
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telling people what is like. it is two minutes of american splices of life. host: you also tell our stories. sad stories. not just excesses of opportunities. guest: absolutely. one of the voice of america is a man's battle with aids. he was a famous olympian diver. he is living with aids. the state but in the u.s. a woman who founded the vietman -- the designer of the vietnam wall and the scars it has left in many americans. and what the wall does to heal. we can't just show the good side of america because our audience
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is no propaganda when they see it. and -- our audiences no propaganda when they see it. if we only show the positive side of the u.s., they will find alternative ways to get information. host: independent caller in indiana. welcome. caller: good morning. happy independence day. i am a listener to voice of america. it can be great tool in promoting american value. the voice of america must have infiltrated whatever has been done because the voice of opposition to the iranian government has been muted. there are programs that analyzed the news and voiced the iranian opposition and most of those have been canceled. every time the u.s. government wants to have negotiations with
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the iranian government, unfortunately, the opposition voices from the voice of america being broadcast are shut down. the credibility of the voice of america has been diminished. three years ago, even with the uprising held in iran, voice of america to the very passive stance towards those opposition voices. host: are you from iran? caller: yes. i am a u.s. citizen. i love this country. i love iran, too. guest: thank you for your comments. every day on the persian television programs, there are opposition voices to what is going on in iran. i do not think there is a
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diminishment in the opportunities before opposition voices to be heard on the persian news network. you know, personalities come and go. we do want to present accurate and reliable information and be able to give a wide variety of opinions and a wide variety of voices the opportunities to deliver information and the liver opinions so that iranians and others around the world can make their own minds about what is that is going on. host: we go to ohio. we will hear from more than pure republican column. caller: hello. have before the july. -- happy fourth of july. on a scale of 125 with 5 being the highest, where you place voice of america?
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rush limbaugh re your program on a scale of 1 to 5. host: what you think about it? caller: i am very impressed. i wish we could get it more often. i think it is a good program. guest: i invite you to log in at voanews.com and make up your mind about what it is we are broadcasting to the rest of the world. almost all of our content is available. host: steve redisch executive editor of voice of america. thank you for coming in to talk about this with us. happy fourth of july to you. we will continue our series tomorrow, looking at foreign broadcasters in the u.s. with cctv.
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on friday, we round things out with bbc america. this is on our website, c- span.org. coming up tomorrow, we will hear from the former director of the congressional budget office, now president of the american action forum talking about the affordable care act. we will also hear from of the author of "twilight of the elite." you may have seen him as the msnbc host. he is also with the nation. we will hear from cctv america. we leave you with this image of senator john mccain who is in afghanistan today with troops. he tweeted out that it is always good to send independence day reach expand into then stay with our troops. at the independence day to you. see you again tomorrow morning at 7:00 a.m. eastern. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2012]
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>> it is independence day. a look at our our schedule heren c-span. next, a congressional gold medal ceremony for the first african american marines known as the montford point marines and then at a hearing on feature plot -- future plans for the national mall. after that, how minority leader nancy pelosi and she reflects on her 25 years in congress, including being elected the first female speaker of the house. president obama staying here in washington to celebrate america's 236 birthday. in about 35 minutes he will take part in a naturalization ceremony for active service ceremony for active service members